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Jan 2, 2018

End of year: we show what we learnt

100 children participate in Pilares' Education Pro
100 children participate in Pilares' Education Pro

Every year all the students of Pilares' Education Program prepare a special show where they show to their families what they've learned during the year with their tutors and at the recreational workshops.

This year has been super special because, thanks to the support we receive from different donors and institutions that collaborate with Pilares, we were able to add an English workshop for the 100 children that participate at the program.

Learning a second language means more opportunities for their future as well as a stimulating activity for their minds and their capability to learn new things.

So the end of year show was the moment to express this new knowledges.

1st and 2nd graders sang and danced to the rythm of head, shoulders, knees and toes since during the year they learned about the human body. The 3rd and 4th grade students prepared a song about the colors of the rainbow. 5th and 6th sang and played the drums (fabricated by themselves) to the rythm of Queen's We Will Rock You. Finally, 7th grade students shared how Micheal Jackson's Thriller is danced in Villa 21-24.

It was a great celebration where each student had the chance to share what they learnt with their family, tutors and volunteers that accompany them during the year.

Thank you for supporting this project which not only helps 100 children with their academic development, but also encourages them to seek the best for the future and respect who they are. 

Oct 2, 2017

Meet Gladys: former student and now volunteer at the Education Program

Volunteers with the students
Volunteers with the students

Gladys wakes up in her house in Villa 21-24 (Buenos Aires biggest shantytown) and gets ready for another day of volunteering at Pilares' Education Program. She lives a few blocks away from the Parrish where the program takes place. From Tuesday to Friday, she attends the program as a volunteer and helps the 7° grade girls and boys with their homeworks. She accompanies, contains and hels the children in their daily lives. 

When Gladys was very young she had to leave her home country, Paraguay, with her siblings and her mother and moved to Villa 21-24, the biggest shantytown in Buenos Aires, Argentina. 

It was a challenging new beginning: she had to change school, make new friends and get familiar with a new neighborhood, new customs and routines. Besides, her mother started working all day long and that meant Gladys and her siblings staying alone during long hours of the day. In Buenos Aires, children that attend to public schools have clases during the morning OR during the afternoon, having the other part of the day free. In some situations, this means the children stay alone while their parents are working till late since they cannot afford a baby sitter.

This was Gladys case, but luckily one of her neigbours encouraged her mother to take the her to Pilares' Education Youth Program, where they could spend the other half of the day in company of other children of their age and tutors and volunteers who take care of them and provide a proper environment to make school homework and different workshops that promote the children's creativity and development. 

So Gladys started attending to the Education Program when she was 9 and stayed at the program until she was 13 and started Secondary School.

"For me it was an experience that helped me have a happy childhood and also a huge help for my family. I felt contained, it was like a home to me".

Today she is 20 and remembers those days with a lot of affection. This love and company she felt made her become a volunteer and a guide for the children that attend the program nowadays. 

"This is my way of thanking and giving back all that I received during my year at the Education Program. It feels great to be on the other side now, knowing how good this place is for the children's development".

Apart from the volunteers like Gladys, each group counts with a tutor and different workhop leaders that make the art, radio, music and theatre workshops possible. Children also receive English lessons with a language teacher and they have PE classes.

One hundred children ages 6 to 13 from Villa 21-24 are participating in this program. Each one of them wants to make the best of their lives. It's our responsability to provide them all the possibilites to achieve it.

Students have time to do their homeworks
Students have time to do their homeworks
100 children aged 6 to 13
100 children aged 6 to 13
A tutor accompanies the children every day
A tutor accompanies the children every day
Art workshops
Art workshops
Gladys shared her story with Pilares' community
Gladys shared her story with Pilares' community

Links:

Jul 5, 2017

Sports and values meet at the Education Program

Sports day at the Education Program
Sports day at the Education Program

It is Thursday and many of the students are excited because its "Sports for Sharing" day.  Each Thursday the children participate in this workshop called "Sports for Sharing (Deportes para Compartir)" that aims to promote values among the children through sports and recreational acrtivities that take place in the Education Program of Pilares.

Awareness about global challenges, healthy lifestyles, respect for cultural diversity and inclusion and learning the importance of civic values are some of the topics that are given during the twelve meeting that the workshop has between march and july. There are different activities for each topic. 

One of them was the "Family Day" meeting in which the parents were invited to participate in the games that the kids prepared and guided the adults through them. It was a great day! The students enjoyed sharing their activities with their families and also exchanging experiences with the families of their friends. 

Another activity that took place at the workshop and was a great success was the visit of two professional volley players that gave a talk to all the kids and encouraged them to pursue their dreams and work hard for them. After the speech the students had the chance to play some volleyball with them!

Finally, on July 6th we will be receiving a special package from Mexico, where this workshop also takes place thaks to the NGO Educacion para Compartir. This activity, called "The Treasure Box Exchange", enourages the cultural exchange between the Education Program students in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and the students from a school in Mexico.

At the beginning of the year the kids sent a box from Argentina to Mexico with many traditional elements that they cherish from the local culture to show their traditions and culture to the school in Mexico. They also included their own drawing and games. Now is time to receive it back! The children are really excited about this and can't wait for this incoming Thursday!

This workshop has definitely impact the children in a really positive way, enabling them to explore more of theirselves through sports and recreation, and also learning about positive values. We are very happy to promote this kind of experiences at the Education Program and we are sure this has a meaningful impact in the rest of their lives. 

We want to thank specially to all the donors that choose to contribute with the program and make possible this kind of moments. Let's keep on working together to promote a better future for all the children that live in the shantytown Villa 21-24, Barracas, Buenos Aires City. 

5th and 6th grade boys choosing teams for the matc
5th and 6th grade boys choosing teams for the matc
More than 80 children ages 6-13 participate
More than 80 children ages 6-13 participate
Professional volley players encouraging the kids
Professional volley players encouraging the kids
Team work!
Team work!

Links:

 
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